Report: Schools Need to Shift from Textbooks to Digital Instructional Materials Within Five Years

Here on Technapex we’ve covered the shift higher education is starting to make in moving away from the traditional textbook model toward digital textbooks and other OERs. Now, it appears that K-12 may not be far behind.

Yesterday the State Education Technology Directors Association (SETDA) released a report on the importance of K-12 schools shifting from printed textbooks to digital education resources. The report, titled Out of Print: Reimagining the K-12 Textbook in a Digital Age, outlines the benefits of digital resources and OERs and the factors required for successful implementation of digital resources. Ultimately, the report recommends that states and school districts shift to digital instructional materials within the next five years — no later than the 2017-18 school year.

The report is full of different K-12 schools’ success stories in shifting toward digital open content and OERs from traditional textbooks in the hopes that other schools and districts will make changes as well. Out of Print also offers comprehensive recommendations for government, industry,and educators to ensure that the shift toward digital instructional materials improves student achievement and engagement without breaking the budget.

SETDA executive director Douglas Levin said in a statement:

In a time of tight budgets and increasing expectations, many schools today purchase both print and digital instructional materials in a duplicative and uncoordinated fashion, with far too little attention to quality and value for money. If the shift to digital instructional materials is not made immediately, major funding will continue to be directed to traditional materials that will tie the hands of students and educators to static, inflexible content for years to come. Only if education leaders can act now, can they influence the reimagination of the K-12 textbook.

Out of Print was created as a collaborative effort by state educational technology leaders, leading technology companies, publishers, and policy experts working to create innovative new K-12 instructional materials.

The full report is available online, which you can read here.

What do you think of the disruption of the traditional K-12 textbook? Maybe you have a great idea for digital open content for elementary and high school students? Sound off in the comments below, or share your thoughts with me at cdoyle@technapex.com.

 

Caity Doyle

Caity is a former English teacher and the editor of Technapex. Caity is extremely passionate about education and is TriplePoint PR's resident edtech expert. When not researching education policy and edtech, she enjoys running along the Bay Trail while blaring the Boss through her headphones, watching the Giants beat the Dodgers, and meeting fellow Italians in North Beach.

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About Caity Doyle

Caity is a former English teacher and the editor of Technapex. Caity is extremely passionate about education and is TriplePoint PR's resident edtech expert. When not researching education policy and edtech, she enjoys running along the Bay Trail while blaring the Boss through her headphones, watching the Giants beat the Dodgers, and meeting fellow Italians in North Beach.